Tenant's Guide to
Should you Rent or Buy a Home?
Whether to rent or buy is not a straight forward answer for most people. There is often both a financial side of the equation as well as a non-financial side of the equation. Most calculators take into account loan information, maintenance expense, taxes, insurance, appreciation and how long you expect to stay in the home. Within the last several years, the calculators have become much more inclusive covering a wide range of factors.
But what else is there? Whether you rent or buy should also take into account where you are in regards to your life and its upcoming obligations. Did you just start out in your career? Is there a job move in the next 3-10 years? Are you military and unsure of your next assignment? Do you know if your family is going to grow in the next few years? Unfortunately, the calculator is not helpful with these topics.
What about the economy and the lending market? What are interest rates going to do in the next few years? Will mortgages be easier or harder to get? Again, the calculator is no help with these factors either.
Can we tell you what the best decision is for your situation? Of course not, but we can help you bring all of these topics up for consideration so that you are up on all of the latest economic trends and ultimately become an informed decision maker. If you have questions about Colorado Springs Property Management Contact us for more information.
Move Ins and Move Outs
When you rent a property from Springs Homes for Rent, you will go through a move-in process which includes a detailed move-in inspection. The purpose of this inspection is to document the condition of the property in detail. Your job as a tenant is to maintain the property to this condition and deliver the property back to us in this same condition when you move-out.
Move-In Condition – When you move into a property managed by Springs Homes for Rent, it will have been fully cleaned, carpets professionally cleaned and re-keyed from the previous tenants. You will not be charged for this initial condition, but you will be required to return the property to us in this same condition at move-out. Costs for re-keying the property will be deducted from your Security Deposit at move-out and we are happy to give you an estimate of what this costs for your specific property. If you do not wish to fully clean the property or have the carpets professionally cleaned, we can arrange this for you and it will be deducted from your Security Deposit.
Maintenance During Your Tenancy – In Property Management, things do wear out and break over time and we realize that fact. If, during your tenancy, something breaks that falls under normal wear and tear, please let us know immediately so that we can get it fixed right away. In most cases, you will not be charged for this repair. If, on the other hand something breaks that falls outside of normal wear and tear (i.e. a baseball breaking a window), please let us know right away and we can get you in touch with one of our vendors for the repair. In most cases, you will be charged for this type of repair. Your lease and accompanying documentation talk about what falls under normal wear and tear and what does not. If you ever have a question, feel free to ask us.
Move-Out Condition – Remember how nice and clean your property was when you moved in? That is the condition that it needs to be in when you move-out. The move-in inspection report will provide us the baseline for the condition of the property. Was that gouge in the wall there when you moved in? It should be documented on the move-in inspection report, so there will be no questions when you move out.
Have you ever heard that communication is the key to any good relationship? Well, it is especially true in Property Management. We want to have open lines of communication between our tenants and our management company. We encourage all tenants to use the portal to start a conversation in order to ask us a question like “What day is the recycling day?”, or to let us know that something happened with your payment “My bank account was flagged for fraud, I am opening a new account to make a new payment” or to let us know if something needs repair, “The dishwasher is leaking and we need someone to fix it”. All of this type of information should be communicated to us on the portal. Here are some basic guidelines to help you decide who to call.
Real Emergencies – Dial 911
Utility Emergencies – Call Utility Company Directly
- Broken Water Pipe
- Loss of Electricity
- Gas Odor
Home Emergencies – Submit Maintenance Request, you will hear from us in < 1 hour
- Leaking Water/Roof
- Storm Damage
- Loss of Heat/AC
- Security Issue
Non Emergencies – Submit Maintenance Request, you will hear from us in < 24 hours
- Broken Appliances
- Payment Questions
- Move-in, Move-out Scheduling
One of the main jobs of a Property Management company is to make sure that the property is properly maintained. We stress to our tenants not to be reluctant to let us know if something needs repair. Your lease gives very specific information on the tenant’s responsibilities. Here is a quick guide to show you some examples of what maintenance charges fall under the tenant’s responsibility.
- Snow Removal
- General lawn care and landscape maintenance
- Maintenance or repair caused by willful actions or negligence (broken window, ink stain on carpet, damage by pets)
- Pest Control
- Maintenance of smoke detectors
Springs Homes for Rent’s Responsibility
- Winterizing the sprinkler system in the fall
- De-winterizing the sprinkler system in the spring
- Annual furnace maintenance
- Appliance repair due to normal wear and tear
- Landscape repair cause by storms or disease (downed tree due to winds, dead trees due to disease)
These are just a few examples. Please refer to your signed lease for a full discussion of responsibilities of maintenance items.
We also help by taking care of some of the seasonal maintenance required. We will have your sprinkler system winterized in the fall and de-winterized in the spring. We also will schedule an annual furnace maintenance check in the fall. This will make sure your furnace is working properly and this preventative maintenance often eliminates those emergency calls in the middle of winter.
All maintenance items less than $350 will be covered by your maintenance escrow and will be deducted from your monthly owner payment. If your home requires more extensive repairs, you can add money electronically to your escrow to cover this amount.
Technology has made the financial transactions of Property Management so much easier. Using a web-based system like we do allows full access to both owners and tenants for all bills, conversations and payments. Setting up an epayment account is easy through your portal for your tenant payments. Please take into consideration that the settlement of your payment will take 3 to 4 business days. In months where the payments date is a weekend or holiday, your payment will be initiated the next business day. To avoid a non-sufficient funds fee, please be sure that your bank account has the sufficient funds to cover your payment. Follow the simple instructions below.
Setting up Tenant Epayments
- Log into the tenant portal
- Click the Orange button “Setup Payment Account”
- Fill out your banking account information
- The routing and bank account information follows this format:
Setting up Tenant Auto Epayments – Never worry about late fees again!
- Setup your epayment account as detailed above.
- In the portal you will see an orange button “Auto Epayments”
- Choose the start date you would like to make your payments and the amount you would like to pay. You can modify or cancel your scheduled payments at any time. Remember that settlement of your payment will take 3 to 4 business days.
Frequently Asked Questions
Most frequent questions and answers about Colorado Springs Property Management
Rent is due on the 1st.
Online rent payments through the portal are the preferred method. If you must pay by check, a manual processing fee will be assessed.
Yes, you may pay your rent online directly out of your bank account! We offer very low fees and you can even schedule your rent payment to occur automatically each month. Contact us to set this up for your account.
Most of our leases are 12 months, but it is determined by the property owner. Contact us to inquire about a specific rental.
Contact us online through the portal.
Yes, we require all tenants to carry renter’s insurance. It is generally between $15-$40 per month depending on coverage.
Yes, there is a standard military clause in the lease. Please read it and make sure you understand how it applies to your situation.
The tenant is responsible for yard and lawn maintenance.
The tenant is responsible for maintaining trash service during the extent of the lease.
The tenant is responsible for snow removal, unless it is included by the HOA.
Springs Homes for Rent is responsible for the seasonal maintenance of the sprinkler system and any seasonal furnace maintenance.
Most of our Colorado Springs rentals are handled by Colorado Springs Utilities 719-448-4800. If they do not service your property, they most likely can direct you to the proper utility company based on your address.
Cable can be obtained through Comcast 1-877-685-MOVE. Installation of DirectTV or DISH requires approval. Please contact us for more information.
Every tenant’s situation is different. A general rule of thumb is your rent should be no more that 1/3 of your gross monthly income.
Any work performed on the house must have prior approval from the home owner. Contact us about your plans and we will submit it for approval.
The tenant is responsible for the mailbox key. If a key becomes lost, the tenant is responsible for the replacement key through the Post Office.